San Diego Leaders Rally for “Free Ride Day”, Oct. 5

All fares will be waived on all buses, Trolleys, the COASTER and SPRINTER

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San Diego- Today, regional leaders and clean air advocates gathered at Old Town Transit Center to encourage San Diegans to celebrate California Clean Air Day by choosing transit on October 5-  the region’s fourth Free Ride Day. The Metropolitan Transit System (MTS) and North County Transit District (NCTD) have partnered up to waive all transit fares on Free Ride Day, this includes all buses, Trolleys, the COASTER and SPRINTER throughout the day. Rideshare Week is also taking place October 3-7 to encourage employees to try ridesharing.

“Whether you are going to work, school, running errands, or choosing to explore more of San Diego, Free Ride Day gives you the perfect opportunity to leave the car at home, take transit, and join the clean air movement across the state of California,” said Nathan Fletcher, MTS Board Chair and Chair, San Diego County Board of Supervisors. “Reducing our carbon footprint is critical to fight climate change, and clean transit options are key to improving air quality in our communities.”

“Free fare for clean air. Now is the perfect time for Free Ride Day as gas prices are climbing once again, and we face real climate struggles,” said Jewel Edson, NCTD Board Chair and Solana Beach City Councilmember. “Taking transit, even for a few trips, will significantly reduce congestion and make an enormous difference in our air quality.”

On Free Ride Day, here are some of the benefits passengers can enjoy when leaving the car at home:

  • Cost savings: With gas prices still reaching $6/gallon in San Diego County, riders are invited to try the commute cost calculator to see how much they can save by choosing transit. Hyperlink needed
  • Trolley to PETCO! Avoid special event traffic and parking costs: The Padres will play their final home game on Free Ride Day. Fans can take the COASTER or all three Trolley lines to get to Petco Park.
  • Reduce air pollution: People who will participate in Free Ride Day are encouraged to take the clean air pledge and demonstrate the collective commitment to cleaner air.

Free Ride Day will be valid on all MTS and NCTD fixed-routes services including buses, the Trolley, SPRINTER and COASTER (MTS Access, NCTD LIFT and Amtrak R2R trains are not part of this promotion). Passengers won’t need a PRONTO card to ride either system. MTS and NCTD services will operate on a normal weekday schedule.

Free Ride Day Pop-Ups

MTS will also hold pop-up outreach events at major transit centers in the morning (from 6 – 8 a.m.) and afternoon (from 4 - 6 p.m.) to thank riders for choosing transit. Riders can stop by for transit info, and promotional items and enter to win a Free Ride Day giveaway! Click here to see full list of locations. 

About MTS

The Metropolitan Transit System (MTS) operates more than 100 bus routes and three Trolley lines in 10 cities and unincorporated areas of San Diego. MTS is a leader in advancing initiatives to create a greener, cleaner and better-connected transit system in San Diego. Each weekday nearly 200,000 passenger trips are taken throughout the MTS system taking people to work, school, health appointments and other essential trips. In FY 2022, MTS served more than 57 million riders. For service schedule updates, news, alerts and more information on how you can use public transportation, go to www.sdmts.com.

About NCTD

The North County Transit District is a public transportation agency providing over 10 million passenger trips in Fiscal Year 2019 throughout North San Diego County and into downtown San Diego. NCTD is designated as a rail common carrier by the Surface Transportation Board based on the movement of interstate commerce on the tracks and the Railroad of Record by the Federal Railroad Administration responsible for safety over the entire San Diego portion of the LOSSAN corridor. NCTD's system includes BREEZE buses (with FLEX service), COASTER commuter trains, SPRINTER hybrid rail trains, and LIFT paratransit service. NCTD's mission is to deliver safe, convenient, reliable, and user-friendly public transportation services. For more information, visit: GoNCTD.com.

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